Are You Overwhelming Your Clients? by Monica Bauer

In my years of venturing into numerous spas and salons, one thing that I see over and over again and quite frankly drives me crazy is an overwhelming selection of skin care products.  All too often, I have been faced with an immediate bombarding of crammed retail shelves with too many selections to choose from.  These multiple skin care choices are the ultimate culprit of client confusion. 

When clients want to address a particular need and are faced with more than two lines to choose from, they will either leave due to the confusion or buy the least expensive product, even if another option is actually better at targeting their concerns.  This leads to product dissatisfaction, client frustration, increased client attrition and ultimately, lost retail sales. 

Retail sales should account for 30-50% of your spa’s revenue, how can we help ensure that clients purchase your retail products and experience positive results?  A simple rule – KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid):  Cut down on client confusion by stream lining your skin care lines and by bringing in other appealing retail products to have a true boutique.

The big question is how many skin care lines are enough?  My rule of thumb is this: Have one primary, one secondary and maybe one medical line.   

Product Line 1 = Offer a name recognition line.  Although usually sold at a higher price point, many seasoned spa-goers buy on name recognition alone.  This line should include a full array of skin/body care as well as hair products (if applicable).

Product Line 2 = Offer a Private Label Line but select only few products, it will be your secondary line.   The beauty of branding your own line is not only the recognition your spa/salon receives and the control you have over the products you provide, but also increased profit margins and higher client savings for the high performance skin and body care that wears your name.  Also, with your own signature line, client loyalty increases since clients are unable to find the products at other local spas or salons, thus prohibiting the client from price shopping.

Product Line 3 (if possible) = Offer a medical-grade line.  Medical grade product lines offer pharmaceutical grade active ingredients and can only be sold by dermatologists, plastic surgeons and medi-spas.   Clients who visit medi-spas and obtain services from medical doctors or medical estheticians are highly trusting of these service providers and are likely to purchase products when recommended for their at-home care system.  If your spa offers medical services, ie: botox, laser hair removal, dermal fillers, a medical retail line is a necessity.

Try minimizing your skin care offerings and by doing so, your team will be able to make confident recommendations and your clients will in turn, purchase beneficial products based on their true needs, not on pricing.  This simple solution will help with decreased product returns, increased retail sales and increased client loyalty. but the best part is that it will free up some funds so you can expand into other retail options to continue the spa experience at home.  Also, did you hear?  InSPAration Management just came out with a new CD called Innovative Merchandising Strategies to Increase Sales.  It  will transform your boutique into an enticing guest friendly zone. Check it out and happy selling!

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